Jazz Related Blues

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The blues have had a strong influence on jazz since the very beginning. Likewise, when you listen to a guitarist like Robben Ford effortlessly blend the two genres it becomes hard to tell where one genre ends and other starts.

The Jazz Related Blues genre at JMA is for those blues artists who also play jazz, as well as important blues artists who had an impact on the world of jazz.

jazz related blues top albums

Showing only albums and live's | Based on members ratings & JMA custom algorithm

JIMMY SMITH Bashin' The Unpredictable Jimmy Smith Album Cover Bashin' The Unpredictable Jimmy Smith
JIMMY SMITH
4.98 | 3 ratings
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JIMMY SMITH Jimmy And Wes:The Dynamic Duo Album Cover Jimmy And Wes:The Dynamic Duo
JIMMY SMITH
4.74 | 6 ratings
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DINAH WASHINGTON Dinah Jams Album Cover Dinah Jams
DINAH WASHINGTON
4.95 | 2 ratings
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JIMMY SMITH The Cat Album Cover The Cat
JIMMY SMITH
4.71 | 5 ratings
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JIMMY SMITH Back at the Chicken Shack Album Cover Back at the Chicken Shack
JIMMY SMITH
4.64 | 9 ratings
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KENNY BURRELL Midnight Blue Album Cover Midnight Blue
KENNY BURRELL
4.63 | 8 ratings
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DUKE ROBILLARD Guitar Groove-A-Rama Album Cover Guitar Groove-A-Rama
DUKE ROBILLARD
5.00 | 1 ratings
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DUKE ROBILLARD Blue Mood - The Songs Of T-Bone Walker Album Cover Blue Mood - The Songs Of T-Bone Walker
DUKE ROBILLARD
5.00 | 1 ratings
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DUKE ROBILLARD Stretchin' Out (Live) Album Cover Stretchin' Out (Live)
DUKE ROBILLARD
5.00 | 1 ratings
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AMOS GARRETT Get Way Back (A Tribute to Percy Mayfield) Album Cover Get Way Back (A Tribute to Percy Mayfield)
AMOS GARRETT
5.00 | 1 ratings
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AMOS GARRETT I Make My Home in My Shoes Album Cover I Make My Home in My Shoes
AMOS GARRETT
5.00 | 1 ratings
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AMOS GARRETT Acoustic Album Album Cover Acoustic Album
AMOS GARRETT
5.00 | 1 ratings
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This list is in progress since the site is new. We invite all logged in members to use the "quick rating" widget (stars bellow album covers) or post full reviews to increase the weight of your rating in the global average value (see FAQ for more details). Enjoy JMA!

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Sunshine
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DAVINA AND THE VAGABONDS
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4am Always
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ELLIOTT SHARP
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Twisted Blues Volume 2
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OZ NOY
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I'm Back Again
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LUCKY PETERSON
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The Soul Of A Bluesman
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LUCKY PETERSON
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Vari-Colored Songs
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LAYLA MCCALLA
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Bring It Back
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CATHERINE RUSSELL
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A Day in Nashville
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ROBBEN FORD
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jazz related blues Music Reviews

ELLIOTT SHARP Terraplane

Album · 1994 · Jazz Related Blues
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siLLy puPPy
Although i'm not the hugest fan and hardly familiar with the vast discography of ELLIOTT SHARP, I am familiar with a handful of his recordings and actually liking a few. For anyone who has had even the tiniest of sampling of his music will know that his stuff is plain strange and otherworldly. He has been a major player in the avant-garde and experimental world of music for decades and has also dabbled in no wave, modern classical and free jazz. So what a surprise when I picked this up and threw it in just to familiarize myself with more of his music.

What came out of my speakers was simple blues songs. I had to check to see if the correct CD was in the jewel case because I had no idea ELLIOTT had done anything even remotely sounding like anything the public would recognize as music! Yep. It was he. On TERRAPLANE basically we have a whole bunch of covers from classic blues artists such as Otis Rush, Freddie King and Sleepy John Estes and a few originals that fit into the mix. Everything here is well played but I have never been a fan of cover albums and I would rather hear his avant-garde stuff. This is nice and all but I can't understand why he would want to play these songs so faithfully without putting his own weird stamp on them. Nice but safe and i'd rather hear the original artists when I go for classic blues.

Although this is under the ELLIIOTT SHARP name, this is actually the first album of the band that he would name TERRAPLANE who would put out a few more blues albums after this one, however one of these is enough for me and I don't think i'll be exploring this branch of his musical output.

YUSEF LATEEF The Blue Yusef Lateef

Album · 1968 · Jazz Related Blues
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Sean Trane
Yusef’s generally most acknowledged second half of the 60’s album, The Blue Yusef, indeed the album has some credential at being among his better works in a very prolific career, though some jazz purists would probably beg to differ. As you’ll guess by the title, the album features much blues, a good deal of it being 12 bars, and a rarer 16 bars one, which sounds more mysterious. This could Ysef’s first album for Ahmet Ertegun’s Attlantic label (coming after from his impulse period), as well.

Opening on the bluesy Juba, Yusef brings immediate depth by mixing harmonica (courtesy of Buddy Lucas) and highly evocative from The Sweet Inspirations. The following 8-mins Like It Is has a highly haunting melody, first opening on an enchanted flute, then segueing in a delightful sax, then the underlying Lawson piano unleashes and a string quartet concludes in a masterful way. The exotic sounding (I’d say far-east, mixed with south-eastern Asia roots) Moon Cup is based on Phrygian scales, and it’s probably the least accessible track on the album. Othelia is a rather standard boogie blues with little interest, unlike the train-like rhythms of Back Home, where the harmonica returns, along some demented sax and percussions. Get Over and the rest of the flipside are different versions of blues. Not really YL’s most representative album, but the first and third tracks are among my faves of his.

"BROTHER" JACK MCDUFF The Honeydripper

Album · 1961 · Jazz Related Blues
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js
“The Honeydripper” was Jack McDuff’s third album and found him moving away from his hard bop beginnings and towards the new soul jazz sound, the end result is five tracks of pure blues (plus one Mancini classic) played by four guys with jazz chops. Jimmy Forrest is on tenor and provides an old school big sound rooted in the blues and early swing. Grant Green is making his debut recording on this one and easily holds his own against the others. All of the tunes are good, but collectors of lounge classics will want to take notice of McDuff’s cover of Mancini’s “Mr Lucky”. Brother Jack approaches this one with all the stops out for that classic full organ sound and extra swanky lounge groove. Other highlights on here include the up-tempo boppish “Whap!”, and “I want a Little Girl”, which is played with that odd sound that is created when only the high drawbars on the B3 are pulled out.

There’s not a lot to say about this one, fans of B3 jazz will know what to expect. “The Honeydripper” compares favorably to other records like it, and fortunately does not have any of the corny tracks that sometimes mar other organ soul jazz records. As a point of reference and comparison, during this same time period, Jimmy Smith's music and organ sound were a little more dry and less gospel sounding than McDuff's, and Smith's structures were more open with longer songs featuring long relaxed solos. Partly because of Forrest, McDuff’s music draws a little more from older swing and jump blues.

JIMMY SMITH Jimmy Smith's Greatest Hits

Boxset / Compilation · 1969 · Jazz Related Blues
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js
With so many Jimmy Smith compilations out there, on vinyl and CD, its hard to tell which might be the best one to go for. If you are looking at your vinyl options, then “Jimmy Smith’s Greatest Hits” (BST 89901) on Blue Note might be the best way to go. All of the tunes on here were recorded between 1957 and 1963, which many consider to be the peak of Smith’s studio recording career. During this time with Blue Note, Smith developed his signature style of virtuoso hard bop riffs played over simple blues changes. Later in his career, on other labels, Smith would veer off into soul jazz, pop, disco and other commercial concerns, but his recordings with Blue Note were always pure jazz blues, some of the most unpretentious and satisfying music you will find. Jimmy’s pioneering work on the B3 is so strong that it went on to influence thousands from Joey DeFrancesco to Jon Lord.

The choice of tunes on here is quite good and some all time favorites can be found including “The Serman” and “Midnight Special”. Other top cuts include the high speed bop dexterity of “The Champ” and the rockin old school RnB of “Prayer Meetin”. There are no duds on here. Blue Note issued another double vinyl Jimmy Smith best of in the mid-70s, but the choice of tunes is better on this earlier compilation, and the sound quality is better too.

WORLD SAXOPHONE QUARTET Breath of Life

Album · 1994 · Jazz Related Blues
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js
Sometime along about the late 70s and early 80s a number of jazz musicians began to shake off the shackles of commercially driven fusion and fuzak and began to rediscover the joy of playing “real jazz”, as in a group of horn players jamming to a syncopated drum beat. Ironically, many of the musicians driving this return to the roots were leaders of the 60s free jazz avant-garde. Musicians like David Murray and Oliver Lake began playing anything from jump blues to New Orleans jazz, but not in a corny Dixieland revival way, their music still maintained the tough gritty edge of the 60s avant-garde and more integrity than granite quarry. It is during this movement that Murray and Lake started the World Saxophone Quartet. By the time 1994 rolled around and they released “Breath of Life”, the quartet also featured Hamiet Bluiett and Arthur Blythe.

“Breath of Life” finds our quartet of saxophone virtuosos being joined by a rhythm section and a vocalist for a set of rockin Chicago blues and blues related grooves. This is a great CD and the band “breathes new life” into a musical form that is often overused and played out. A real star here is B3 soloist Amina Claudine Myers and her classic 60s soul jazz organ solos. Also, vocalist Fontella Bass does a great job with songs like “Suffering with the Blues”. Its tiresome to hear a singer go through the motions with an unconvincing blues performance, but Fontella’s sorrow over a love ruined is real and might get you thinking a bit.

The quartet does offer some variety on here, on “Picasso” they play (sans the rhythm section) an artsy semi avant-garde mix of composition and improvisation, and on “Breath of Life” they back up Fontella’s vocals with an earthy reggae groove. Another highlight is the loungey space groove of album closer “Deb” which features a great baritone solo from Bluiett.

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Artists with Jazz Related Blues release(s)

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